María Isabel Preysler Arrastía (born February 18, 1951) is a Spanish-Filipino socialite and television host. She is the mother of singers Enrique Iglesias, Julio Iglesias Jr., journalist Chabeli Iglesias, and Tamara Falco, the 6th Marchioness of Griñon.
María Isabel Preysler Arrastía
February 18, 1951
|Title||Marchioness of Griñón (1980–1987)|
|Partner(s)||Mario Vargas Llosa (2015–present)|
|Children||5, including Chabeli Iglesias, Julio Iglesias Jr., Enrique Iglesias and Tamara Falcó y Preysler, 6th Marchioness of Griñón|
|Relatives||Neile Adams (maternal aunt)|
Preysler was born in Manila, Philippines, the third of six children to a wealthy family. Her ancestry is from Lubao, Pampanga, Philippines. She attended a private Roman Catholic school; Her father, Carlos Preysler y Pérez de Tagle, was the executive director of Philippine Airlines and on the board of directors for the Banco Español de Manila (Spanish Bank of Manila), while her mother, María Beatriz Arrastía y Reinares, was the owner of a real estate company in Manila. She is the niece of actress Neile Adams, who is her mother's half-sister. She is also the first cousin once removed of American actor Steven R. McQueen, who is Neile's grandson.
During her youth, Preysler was a model who participated in beauty pageants and charity events for the Sheraton Hotels and Resorts in Manila and went on to win titles in several events. At the age of 16, she migrated to Madrid, Spain to live with her uncle and aunt and to study at Mary Ward College, an Irish Catholic University in Spain, where she studied accounting.
Preysler began working as a journalist for Spanish celebrity-news magazine ¡Hola! in 1970, and her first interviewee was her future husband Julio Iglesias. In 1984, she hosted a Spanish lifestyle television programme, Hoy en Casa, and has hosted and appeared in various programs since. In May 2001, she was Prince Charles' guest of honour for the opening of his Spanish Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show in England. She was his guest of honor again in 2005 at a garden party during a holiday to Spain by the Royal Crown. In 2004, Preysler became Spain's welcoming host for David and Victoria Beckham when she hosted a welcoming party at her house for the celebrity couple. She became close friends with Victoria and was often photographed shopping with her during their stay in Madrid.
Preysler continues to be the national spokesmodel for Ferrero Rocher, Suárez jewelry, Manolo Blahnik shoes, Chrysler cars and Porcelanosa tiles, for which American Hollywood actor George Clooney recently worked with her in 2006 to represent the brand in an advertising campaign.
Readers at Hola magazine voted Preysler as the most elegant and best-dressed woman in Spain for 1991, 2002, 2006 and 2007.
In 2006, Preysler was also honored along with Hillary Clinton, Shakira and Yoko Ono among others with the Women Together Award, which honors women for their philanthropical contributions to the United Nations in New York, making her the first woman of Filipino descent in history to win the award.
In 1970, Preysler was introduced to a retired footballer named Julio Iglesias, who had just signed a recording contract to become a singer. Iglesias invited her to watch a Juan Pardo concert. The couple was married seven months later on January 29, 1971. They were married for seven years and the couple had three children, María Isabel (b. 1971), Julio José (b. 1973) and Enrique Miguel (b. 1975). They divorced in 1979. After they had divorced and moved on, in 1982 she sent her children away to Miami to live with their father because of kidnapping threats she was receiving.
In 1987, her two sisters immigrated to Spain with their families to be closer to Isabel. She holds dual citizenship in both the Philippines and Spain.
Her father, Carlos Preysler, is deceased; her mother, Beatriz Preysler, lives in Madrid with Isabel, her daughter Tamara (since her father's death in 2020, Marquesa de Griñón), and Mario Vargas Llosa.
- 1980–1987: The Most Excellent The Marchioness of Griñón
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- R. Arce. "Filipino peoples' Real Ancestry". Filipino Cultured.
- "Isabel Preysler". Yahoo! Noticias España. Archived from the original on May 27, 2008.
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- "10 cosas (+2) que nadie te va a contar de Isabel Preysler".
- "Isabel Preysler, elegida la mujer más elegante de 2007". Hola.
- "Awards Women Together – Women Together Awards". Miguel Villarino. Retrieved April 5, 2006.
- Tantingco, Robby (December 10, 2012). "The Kapampangan girl Julio Iglesias loved before". Archived from the original on July 8, 2013. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Julio Iglesias – Biography". Musica.
- "Spain's Insiders in Insider Scandal". The New York Times. May 23, 1992. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Mario Vargas Llosa confirma que ha pedido el divorcio a su esposa". El Pais. November 17, 2015. Retrieved November 17, 2015.
- "Enrique Iglesias' sister Tamara Falco gets surprise aristocratic title". HOLA! USA. Retrieved September 9, 2020.
- "Muy religiosa, anglófona y aficionada a la música clásica: así es la discreta madre de Isabel Preysler". Vanity Fair (in Spanish). February 22, 2019. Retrieved September 9, 2020.